Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Non-spiritual Christmas

Not being religious and/or superstitious there's very little about the "spiritual/religious" aspects of Christmas that I subscribe to other than that feeling of fuzzy solidarity we get when a group of human beings have a common reference framework within which to act out certain rituals (like family meals etc.). I wouldn't really label that feeling as "spiritual" more like a neurochemical reaction that we all experience in our similar brains in similar ways (apart from psychopaths and some Tory MP's of course) You might think that this philosophical position in some way limits the ways in which atheists or non-religious people might extract enjoyment or meaning from holidays like Christmas or Easter etc. 

The best analogy I can think of is that of when someone loses one of their senses, like eye-sight then the tendency is for the other senses to become more acute, for example their hearing becomes better or their sense of touch increases in fidelity etc. For me this kind of adjustment is reflected in the way we celebrate less of the religious traditions and more of the modern/secular ones (apart from the silly consumerism ones), for example the food, wine, the films, the playing games, the outings and the family solidarity aspects of this holiday, viewing it through a secular lens if you will. Do I lose anything by looking at things this way, do religious people lose something by not? No, I don't think so, we simply find our kicks and enjoy our down-time in different ways, much the same way that we all have different tastes in food. 

Many people I know think of the humble Brussel Sprout in the same way as the cartoon above (Devils Haemorrhoids etc.) , me on the other hand, I've always loved the things!

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